[act-ma] Wed. Mar 18, Harvard, Interrogations, Forced Feedings, and the Role of Health Professionals

Amy Hendrickson amyh at texnology.com
Mon Mar 9 11:17:24 PDT 2009

Folks, I will be speaking at this event which launches a new book in which I have a chapter. Feel free to join us:
Interrogations, Forced Feedings, and the Role of Health Professionals 

Wednesday, March 18, 2009
6:00 PM
Room TBA
Refreshments provided
Harvard Law School

The involvement of health professionals in human rights and humanitarian law violations has again become a live issue as a consequence of the U.S. prosecution of conflicts with al Qaeda, the Taliban, and Iraq. Health professionals—including MDs trained in psychiatry and PhDs trained in behavioral psychology—have reportedly advised and assisted in coercive interrogation. Health professionals have also been involved in forced feedings. Such practices would not be unique to the United States nor the most extreme forms of abuse in the world. 

The direct involvement of medical professionals in torture and covering up extrajudicial killings is a phenomenon common to many countries. The rules are sometimes obvious, responsibility is clearly defined, and violations are flagrant. In other situations, it is difficult to draw such clear lines. A reexamination of the international norms, as developed in human rights law, humanitarian law, and professional ethics can shed light on these issues.

This event will commemorate the newest Harvard University Press publication by the Human Rights Program, “Interrogations, Forced Feedings, and the Role of Health Professionals.” The event will feature four panelists who contributed to the volume, and will be moderated by Professor Ryan Goodman, Rita E. Hauser Professor of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and Director of the Human Rights Program at Harvard Law School. Panelists for the event include:

Scott Allen
Assistant Professor (Clinical) Medicine, Brown University
Co-Director, The Center for Prisoner and Health Rights 
Medicine as Profession Fellow, Physicians for Human Rights

Robert Jay Lifton
Lecturer on Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School
Former Director, Center on Violence and Human Survival at John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Stephen Soldz
Director of the Center for Research, Evaluation, and Program Development at the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis
Founder, Psychoanalysts for Peace and Justice

Leonard Rubenstein
President and former Executive Director, Physicians for Human Rights
Jennings Randolph Senior Fellow, United States Institute of Peace

For more information on this event, contact the Human Rights Program at hrp at law.harvard.edu or call 617-495-9362. 

Stephen Soldz
Director, Center for Research, Evaluation, and Program Development
Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis
1581 Beacon St.
Brookline, MA 02446
ssoldz at bgsp.edu
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